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Startup ecosystems can be fragmented, competitive, and hidden to newcomers, which is detrimental for local startups and community growth. The Startup Ecosystem Canvas seeks to provide local entrepreneurs with a clear list of resources for every stage of their startup journey, and outline a basic framework for communities to map their ecosystem.

With applications for the Ottawa Founder Institute coming to a close, we are excited to release the Ottawa Startup Ecosystem Canvas, which is currently in Draft v2 below! It was developed by the Ottawa Founder Institute and local leaders Nolan Beanlands and Shawna Tregunna.

This is just a DRAFT, and more input is needed, so please leave your comments on this collaborative Google document to help us complete the list. There are definitely omissions on this current version.

Are you looking to build a startup in Ottawa? Then apply to the Ottawa Founder Institute today!

Startup Stages

There is no one right way to build a technology company, but for the sake of simplicity we have outlined a basic, common, sequential framework.

1. Idea Stage

This is where new entrepreneurs get inspired, learn best practices, develop skills, validate ideas, and begin to build their team and product.

A. Inspire

    • Startup Media: Centralized local information, listings, and news. (i.e. startup blogs/ publications/ lists/ FB groups/ newsletters)
      1. BetaKit

      2. Ottawa Startup Digest

      3. Ottawa Tech Watch

      4. Startup Ottawa

      5. TechVibes Ottawa

      6. TiECon Canada

      7. The Invest Ottawa Network

      8. TON (The Ottawa Network)

      9. Startup Ottawa

    • Inspirational Events: Open, inclusive, beginner startup events (i.e. Startup Weekend, idea fairs, and inspirational meetups)
      1. Capital Drinks

      2. ESAX Networking

      3. Internet of Things (IoT) Meetup

      4. IOT613 Conference

      5. OCE Discovery

      6. Ottawa Business Ideas

      7. Ottawa New Business Expo Events

      8. Ottawa Social Entrepreneurs

      9. Ottawa Technology Startups Meetup

      10. Networking for Nerds

      11. PebbleOTT

      12. Startup Weekend Ottawa-Gatineau

      13. We Are Wearables Ottawa

B. Educate

    • Best Practices: Beginner knowledge-sharing events. (i.e. beginner events that serve to educate more than inspire, like Startup Founder 101, etc).
      1. ambiSHEous StartUp Self Weekend

      2. CollabSpace Meetup Group

      3. Engineering Innovation Ecosystem Meetup

      4. Entrepreneurs' Power Profit Mastermind - Ottawa

      5. L-SPARK Meetup Group

      6. Marketing Workshops for Small Businesses: Ottawa

      7. SaaS Ottawa

      8. Startup Founder 101 Ottawa

      9. Startup Grind Ottawa

    • Training & Feedback: Skill & Idea development. (Ex. bootcamps and comprehensive training programs, like Founder Institute, etc)
      1. Big Data University Meetup

      2. BrainStation

      3. Founder Institute

      4. Junior Achievement Ottawa - Company program

      5. Impact Academy

      6. Lean Practices Ottawa

      7. Lean Startup Machine Ottawa

      8. Startup Canada Tour

      9. The Ultimate Investor Pitch Guide

C. Validate

    • Team Formation: Resources for teaming up. (i.e. events or other resources that facilitate early-stage recruitment and cofounder matching)
      1. AccelerateOTT 2016

      2. BNI: Business Networking International

      3. CoFoundersLab

      4. eSAX: The Entrepreneur Social Advantage Experience

      5. Ethos Networking

      6. FounderDating

      7. Fresh Founders

      8. Ottawa Entrepreneur Seminars and Networking

      9. Ottawa Entrepreneurs

      10. Startup Canada

      11. Startup Canada Day on the Hill

      12. The Ottawa Network

      13. The Ottawa Small Business Network

      14. Women's Network of Ottawa

      15. YOW Civic Tech

    • Build First Product: Hackathons & resources to build. (i.e. hackathons and other builder-focused events and resources)
      1. DECODE '16 - Legacy

      2. DevOps Ottawa

      3. Full Stack HACKS - Devs & CEOs

      4. GreenCity Protohack Ottawa

      5. HackerNest Ottawa Tech Socials

      6. Ontario Centres of Excellence

      7. Open Data Ottawa

      8. Ottawa Ladies Code Club

      9. Ottawa Space Hackers

      10. Random Hacks of Kindness

      11. Time for Another Round - A Pebble Hackathon

2. Launch Stage

In this stage, entrepreneurs establish and formalize the company, develop the product, get feedback from customers, and prepare for the next step.

A. Start

    • Establish: Law firms & banks for startups
      1. AGB Lawyers

      2. BDC

      3. BMO Bank of Montreal

      4. CIBC

      5. Clancy P.C. + Brion Raffoul

      6. Dentons

      7. Fasken Martineau

      8. Gowlings WLG

      9. HazloLaw

      10. Kelly Santini LLP

      11. LaBarge Weinstein LLP

      12. Merovitz Potechin LLP

      13. MDK Business Law

      14. Erin Engelhardt - Patent Agent

      15. Perley-Robertson, Hill & McDougall LLP

      16. RBC Royal Bank

      17. Scotiabank

      18. Soloway Wright LLP

      19. TD Canada Trust

    • Workspace: Co-working and flexible workspaces (note: “official” office space goes in 3.1.a. Infrastructure)
      1. CollabSpace

      2. Coworkly

      3. Impact Hub Ottawa

      4. L-Spark

      5. Makerspace North

      6. My ByWard Office Coworking

      7. The Code Factory

      8. WorkAway Offices

B. Develop

    • Formalize: Accounting, development and HR for early-stage startups.
      1. Aggregate Consulting (prepares claims for SR&ED tax credits)

      2. Atomic Motion

      3. Beck Accounting and Tax

      4. Big Round Eyes

      5. Collins Barrow

      6. Connelly & Koshy Professional Corporation

      7. D. Castro Bookkeeping Services

      8. David Aplin Group

      9. Elite Accounting

      10. excelHR

      11. Gary G. Timmons Professional Corporation

      12. Iversoft Solutions

      13. Jerome & Company Professional Corporation

      14. MARSWorks

      15. Mobilithink

      16. N-VisionIT Interactive

      17. Pixelera

      18. Salopek & Associates Ltd

      19. Seedless Apps

      20. Tap Strategy & HR Consulting

      21. Terabit

    • Prepare for Seed: Incubators and advanced mentorship. (i.e. advanced knowledge sharing, later stage events and resources for startup TEAMS)
      1. Hatch

      2. Startup Garage

      3. GrindSpaceXL

      4. Lead to Win

      5. Ignite Algonquin - Summit

C. Launch

    • Seed Accelerators: Seed funding mentor programs (Techstars-style programs that provide funding)
      1. L-SPARK

    • Pitch & Demo: Show local startups for investment (i.e. demo days for companies seeking seed investment)
      1. Founders on a Bus

      2. Product Hunt Community of Ottawa

      3. Startup Canada Demo Day on the Hill

      4. Startup Ottawa: Showcase Sunday

      5. Venture Demo Day

3. Growth Stage

Here, a startup proves their utility, receives recognition, and scales up. This usually requires funding, angels, VCs, and ways to connect them to startups.

A. Recognition

    • Investor Networking: Connect professional investors with founders. (i.e. events or groups that facilitate connections with professional investors)
      1. Angel One Investor Network

      2. Capital Angels Network

      3. National Angel Capital Organization

      4. Purple Angel

      5. The Indus Entrepreneurs - Ottawa

    • Major Media: Mainstream local business press. (i.e. major local or regional publications that frequently champion local businesses)
      1. BNN

      2. CBC

      3. CTV News

      4. Financial Post

      5. Le Droit

      6. Metro News

      7. Ottawa Business Journal

      8. Ottawa Citizen

      9. Ottawa Sun

B. Funding

    • Angels / Micro-VCs: Seed-stage investors (search AngelList, Gust, Crunchbase)
      1. Anthony Woods

      2. Austin Hill

      3. Aydin Y Mirzaee

      4. Guy Podjarny

      5. Jennifer Francis

      6. Luc Levesque

      7. Marco Janeczek

      8. Mark Baker

      9. Mason Du

      10. Michael Weider

      11. Parm Gill

      12. Tobias Lütke

    • Venture Capitalists: Series A and beyond
      1. Celtic House Venture Partners

      2. Mistral Venture Partners

      3. Wesley Clover

      4. BDC IT Venture Fund

C. Growth

    • Infrastructure: Office space, HR, local business insurance. (i.e. office space/ HR/ insurance providers for capital-rich companies to grow and scale)
      1. Gifford Associates

      2. Hays Recruiting

      3. Huntington Properties

      4. Instant Offices

      5. Lock Search Group

      6. LoopNet

      7. Metcalfe Realty

      8. Oegema, Nicholson & Associates

      9. Ottawa Real Estate

      10. Palladium Insurance

      11. Regus

      12. Rhodes & Williams Insurance Brokers

      13. Search Office Space

      14. SpaceList

      15. Summit Search Group

    • Expansion: Growth accelerators/consultants. (i.e. programs and business consultants for capital-rich companies to grow and scale)
      1. Accenture

      2. Canadian Trade Commissioner Service - Ontario

      3. Capital Park Consulting

      4. Flare Consulting

      5. GC+ General Counsel Services

      6. KPMG

      7. Orbis Risk Consulting

      8. PwC

      9. SOMOS Consulting Group

      10. Stratford Managers

      11. Stratos

4. Success Stories

Successful homegrown companies that have raised significant institutional funding, employ a large workforce, or have achieved liquidity.

  1. Privacy Analytics

  2. Bitaccess

  3. CanvasPop

  4. Foko

  5. Fullscript

  6. Fusebill


  8. Gymtrack

  9. Openera

  10. PageCloud

  11. Project Speaker

  12. Shopify

  13. Spoonity

  14. Zighra


To facilitate the steps, every ecosystem needs strong supporters.

1. Evangelists

Successful local founders who lead the ecosystem & frequently mentor newbies. (i.e. Local leaders who have taken a leadership position, speak at a lot of startup events, mentor all the programs, etc)

  1. Adrian Cho

  2. Anastasia Valentine

  3. Andrew Foti

  4. Chris Johnson

  5. Colin Kinsman

  6. Darrell O'Donnell

  7. Dave McDuff

  8. Derek Medland

  9. Erin Blaskie

  10. George Watt

  11. Glenn Ala

  12. Greg Searle

  13. Greg Weatherdon

  14. Jonah Hetherington

  15. Karen Letain

  16. Kelcey Damage

  17. Leah MacMillan

  18. Luc Lalande

  19. Marc Bacon

  20. Mike Potter

  21. Nolan Beanlands

  22. Neil Pearson

  23. Omar Allam

  24. Patti Church

  25. Pierluigi Buonicore

  26. Scott Annan

  27. Sergio Escobar

  28. Shahab Khan

  29. Shawna Tregunna

  30. Steve Coppola

  31. Steve Wilton

  32. Suzanne Grant

  33. Sylvain Rochon

  34. Tim Skelly

  35. Walter Knitl

  36. Wendy Mayhew

2. Government

Public organizations that facilitate local economic development

  1. BDC

  2. Build in Canada Innovation Program (BCIP)

  3. Canada Foundation for Innovation

  4. Canada Small Business Financing Program

  5. Centre for Innovative Social Enterprise Development

  6. Export Development Canada

  7. Futurpreneur

  8. Invest Ottawa

  9. Investing in Business Innovation

  10. Investment Accelerator Fund - Regional Innovation Centres

  11. Ontario: Starter Company

  12. Ontario: Summer Company

  13. Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation

  14. Ottawa Chamber of Commerce

  15. Ottawa Entrepreneurship Centre

  16. Ottawa's Innovation Pilot Program

3. Talent

Major local business or tech universities and employers that attract and retain local talent.

  • Local Universities (universities with prominent technical or business programs)
    1. Algonquin College

    2. Carleton University

    3. La Cité

    4. Ottawa University

    5. St. Paul University

    6. University of Ottawa

  • Local Employers (Major technical employers, like Microsoft or Google or large local companies, with large local offices)
    1. Adobe

    2. Akamai Technologies

    3. Amazon

    4. Apple - (Soon)

    5. Bell Canada

    6. BlackBerry

    7. Cisco

    8. Google

    9. Halogen Software

    10. IBM

    11. Kinaxis

    12. Lockheed Martin

    13. Microsoft

    14. Motorola

    15. Oracle

    16. QNX

    17. Rogers Communications

    18. Shopify

    19. TELUS Communications

If you'd like to build a startup in Canada, the Ottawa Founder Institute is currently enrolling. Apply today!

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